Ask permission before you take a photograph

When photographing people, especially while in countries with different cultures and languages, it can be difficult to communicate your intentions. In certain countries, if you photograph someone or something you are not ‘supposed’ to photograph, it can quickly turn sour. So out of respect, you should always ask for permission.

From my own personal experiences, people are getting more and more afraid of having a “proper” camera pointed at them. This is odd, as if you were to get your phone out and ask for a selfie you will probably find most people are game, whereas as soon you raise your camera to your face you will at some point face some kind of hostility as people want to know what you are using the image for.

It’s important to understand the law around this and in the UK, as long as you are on public property you can photograph or film whatever or whoever you want. If somebody comes up to you and demands you delete a photograph they were in they have no lawful grounds to demand that.

However, it does come down to the moral standpoint of the photographer in this and obviously, I would advise respecting people’s wishes should they not want to be photographed and use your common sense to ensure you don’t get into any situations which you don’t want to be in.

If you are on private land, it’s important to get permission before you start taking pictures as this is when you can start getting into hot water.

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Tomorrow we’re going to help you find your photographic community and how you can use that to learn. See you then.

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